Returning to Normal Following COVID-19

By Sherri Middleton

As cities and states begin to slowly re-open, many of us will begin to venture out after weeks of staying at home.

            Sports are discussing ways to host events – notably without fans in the early stages and with more stringent policies in place to protect athletes.

            During the isolation to control the Coronavirus and COVID-19, I suspect that many athletes focused on exercise routines, preparing healthy meals and catching up on sleep. It will be interesting to see how sports look when athletes are safe to return.

            For many of us, the weeks spent working from home provided opportunities to do all the things we might have been putting off or couldn’t find time to tackle with a busy work schedule.

I thought my house would be cleaner by now. I thought after all the late-night, sleepless nights with nothing to do after the workday is done, I’d have my home spotless. Not so.

            It appears that the more I clean and make repairs or work in the yard on weekends and after work, there is always something else that needs to be done.

            I’ve been vacuuming quite a bit more because I see more dust. I clean the sinks, toilets, showers and floors more than ever. It’s not that I’m worried about this virus getting to me. It’s just boredom and obsession with all that I see that I could be better.

            I’ve painted areas that needed painting. I’ve cleaned the garage twice. I’ve blown the driveway and sidewalks more times than I can count. Windows are spotless.

            While my gas tank in my vehicle remains very full and the gas tank on my lawnmower burns up the remaining fuel and often blows smoke because I need an oil change and maintenance, I keep trudging along like the rest of you.

            My pots and pans will need to be replaced sooner rather than later because of all the home-cooked meals I’m preparing. Washing those same pots, pans and dishes is a drain. I tried paper plates and soon ran out of them. I am also nearly out of garbage bags and I don’t even make that much garbage. I tried to do some ordering in or pickup with local restaurants. I then remembered that I had food that was going to go to waste. It didn’t make sense to go to pick food up when I needed to cook a meal with the money I’d already spent. But I am missing my favorite restaurant meals and I want to return to that soon.

            I wanted to support local businesses. I always do. I love visiting my favorite dining establishments and social gathering spaces. I’ve ordered some things from them to hopefully keep them open. One person ordering and paying money should help if all of us chip in.

            A friend called the other night to check on me. She said she was missing dining out. She wanted to pull a chair up to the nearby China buffet and eat all her favorite foods.

            I’ve never been much of a buffet person with people coughing and sneezing in the area of the food. These same people mix spoons and serving ladles from one item to the next. I still like my meal to be prepared in the kitchen and delivered especially to me – unless it comes to all-you-can-eat crab legs or shrimp and then caution be damned. Bring it on!

What about my workspace at the office? The actual workspace where I normally go to conduct business? I suspect my desk will need a dusting. The floors might need vacuuming. I hope my plant is okay.

            At some point during this stay-at-home event, I just wanted to go to the beach and walk or swim or put down a blanket and rub my winter-worn feet in the sand. I live at a town at the Alabama beaches and after an initial rush of spring breakers along with seasonal visitors, our beaches were closed down for everyone. I see the pictures. Empty beaches. Beautiful blue-green waters, green or yellow flags and I want to be out there. The beaches now open again but there’s no parking because apparently everyone had the same idea.

            I’m not much of a socializer when I head to the beach. I take a towel, some sunscreen and maybe a small chair.

            I suspect you are all experiencing similar feelings as you isolate at home. Your parks and trails are closed. The fields are empty. Pools will not open until the government says we are okay.

            Mostly now I worry about healthcare workers who are on the frontline.

            I worry about my neighbors and I keep reaching out to see if they need anything.

I worry about small business owners in our community and across the country who may not survive. I also worry about those employees who are suffering without paychecks or jobs now.

            The stimulus checks will not help most people in this country. Those payouts were too little for most.

            I believe we will find a way to return to normal soon. Our readers and partners tell us they are hopeful and planning for a quick return to normal as soon as possible.

            I know we at SportsEventsMedia Group are still planning our events. We are still publishing the magazine and online content and we continue to stay in contact with all of you as often as possible.

            How are you handling isolation? Are you ready to get back to normal?

            Email me at sherri@sportseventsmediagroup.comto share how you are surviving now. Better days are coming. I’m sure of that!